I try to be positive.
But sometimes it’s hard.
1. I try and refi and the mortgage broker bases his GFE on the “Make Me Move” price I placed on my home two years ago while playing around with the then-new feature on Zillow. Then, two weeks later, after he gets the appraisal, calls, incredulous, to inform me that the LTV is so far off what he assumed that he can no longer secure the rate he quoted.
2. I try again with another mortgage broker. This broker hooks me up with an appraiser who, after 45 minutes on-site, somehow misses the fact that my home is a 3-bedroom home, not a 2-bedroom home.
3. I am offered an apology by the second mortgage broker, who agrees to credit me $350 for the bad appraisal and send another appraiser out pronto. This appraiser informs me that she has been in the business 26 years and spends about 30 minutes snapping pictures and taking measurements. This morning she calls me to ask, “Your house has 3 bathrooms, right? I can’t remember.”
Look, maybe I was a dumb-ass for posting that “Make Me Move” price. I should have questioned broker #1 earlier. And I definitely should have called my Realtor, who rocks, for a referral.
But my stupidity was met with something of a different order.
So, to be positive, how about this: We create a site where consumers and competent real estate professionals can identify the incompetents in the business publicly?
Ever take a look at Rotten Neighbor? It would kinda be like that, but less fun.
I say this only half-jokingly. I know the idea is fraught with legal and ethical issues, but it would be interesting to try something. As I pointed out a while back, I do not think regulation is the path to a better real estate industry, and the incentives are all working against people calling out peers on a deal-to-deal basis.
But I do think the crowd – and their power to shine light on incompetence or venality – holds the solution.
What do you think?